Archive for the ‘What’s New…’ Category
Mark 17 May in your diary…
Claire will be running an afternoon cooking session at 4pm 17 May on her site. It will run pretty much like our school holiday cooking program and will be a short, sharp and seriously fun session!!
More details will follow – but she will have kids cooking up a family meal - we are thinking of something that is totally iconically Kiwi!
This will be our second year of supporting this day.
We are so excited that Claire is hosting our 4th program and this time, due to the generosity of our sponsors, we can offer it FREE to every kid – as long as they have internet coverage!
This is what you need to know!
There are no fees to participate. There are great prizes for the kids and parents go in the draw to win a fabulous BOSCH dishwasher.
This program is UNIQUE and available ANYWHERE there is Internet coverage. This means parents have no travelling, no pick ups or drop offs – kids learn to cook in their own home, using their food, cooking their dinner. Location is no barrier to participation.
Kids love it
The program is hosted by teen Claire Gourley. She has the ability to motivate and inspire kids to share her food discovery journey. Feedback from kids on the previous three online programs is extremely positive.
Uses technology wisely
Kids love participating in live-chats, uploading images, watching You Tubes and making Internet cooking buddies. We ensure it is in a safe environment and we veto any comments before they are posted. Activities are designed to keep data use to a minimum.
Program is flexible – kids from a huge age range (5 – 16) join in.
We have mums, dads, caregivers and grandparents all having fun with their kids. We also have a lot of kids who are over 14 who join in by themselves interacting with Claire, and others who get a friend over to cook and do the challenges together. During the program families and friends from up and down the country sit down to an It’s My Turn To Cook Tonight dinner!
It’s more than just cooking
We slip in all sorts of other foodie things – like making good food choices, reading labels, kitchen safety, budgeting, nutrition tips, food jokes plus they gain confidence both in the kitchen and on the computer. We send them to do challenges – like over-the-top table settings and random acts of food kindness – all fun activities designed to give kids practical food skills as well as a deeper understanding of food.
Kids who are food savvy have a huge advantage
Research shows kids who have practical food skills are far more likely to make better food choices. Kiwi kids need to be encouraged and supported to make good food choices.
Runs April 22-24 (also 15-17 July & 1-3 October)
Each program has a different theme – the April theme is quick food.
Find out more
Claire and I have spent much of her university holidays working on new publications for you – this first one is now available. We are so excited as this is great techonolgy and a fantastic way to motivate your child. We think this is a big step for us as we move with the times and keep up with technologies your kids are being exposed to.
William, my younger son has just gone into a class at school which is blended learning with iPad as the central focus – and he is loving it… I know your kids will love this cookbook format!
This first book has a focus on food for good weather – light summery food, barbecues, salads and in Claires style of course there are some sweet treats too!
I have five review copies to give away – if you would like a free copy to review please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org
Teenager Claire Gourley shares her food discovery journey with easy, quick recipes and tips to get kids food savvy. For kids aged 9 – 16, this book reflects Claire’s food motto – “I don’t do complicated” and is all about making cooking fun and achievable.
Claire recipes work, taste great and are really really easy. If she didn’t find them reliable, tasty and easy, she ditched them! She has added lots of photos, tips and things kids will probably want answered as they are cooking… for anything a bit tricky she links to her YouTubes.
Claire wants to know enough about food to take good care of herself. She figures lots of kids are the same as her – they love eating food but they’re always busy with friends, school and sport, so they can’t really be bothered spending too much time cooking – but that doesn’t mean want to settle for average food!
It’s My Turn To Cook takes kids on Claire’s food journey as she has worked out what she needs to know to get food savvy! She has gathered quick, easy recipes made a lot of YouTubes, and asked a lot of questions. She intertwines food and nutrition tips so that while kids are cooking they also get skills to make good food choices.
Many cookbooks are written by adults for adults and while they may look beautiful they are often boring… Claire doesn’t do boring!! This informal chatty approach has much appeal with kids of all ages.
The other two titles are now finishing off are
- It’s My Turn to Cook Quick Food and
- It’s My Turn to Cook Bread
Claire and I have been working away on our FREE eBook for the School Holiday Program – and we are pleased to report we are nearly finished! ( with only 2 weeks to go to the program that is a good thing!!)
We’ve included some really easy and quick kids recipes with lots of photos and links to Claires You Tubes. These recipes will keep the kids going all summer – lots of barbecue ideas – from Motorway Meatballs, Homemade Healthy Hashbrowns, some great salads and of course soem Christmas treats…
It is written in Claires succinct light-hearted slightly irreverent style which we know kids love!
By the way Claire’s other award winning hard copy book Who’s Cooking Tonight? makes an excellent Christmas present – and you can get a copy in the shop on this site – have a quick look at this video to see why Claire thinks your kids need it – it is quite funny! ( I think if she was filming it this summer she would add in ” I’m a university student so please buy it so I can pay my fees”!!!)
It’s official, the best nutrition and education brains in the NZ have made a recommendation*, parents are advised to involve their kids in food shopping and cooking family meals.
WOW – what a trump card for parents. It is not just you nagging to get your kids to help – evidence from the experts actually backs you up! Your kids are likely to be healthier if they help. Why? Because study after study shows that a child who has practical food skills makes better food choices…
Okay, so this is good in theory, but how do you do it? It just so happens that I ran some focus groups with kids, aged 9 – 15 years, to find the sort of things parents could do to encourage cooking. What I found out was seriously enlightening, somewhat amusing and really helpful. These eight key points could verge on being precocious – but it certainly helps us if we know what they are thinking!
In their words, this is what parents should do…
1. Let me choose what I cook – ‘Simple – if I don’t like it, I’m not going to want to cook it.’
3. Have all the ingredients – ‘Don’t expect me to be able to substitute ingredients when I am just starting off on this cooking lark!’
4. Stay out of the kitchen – ‘Don’t be a helicopter hovering around. Give me some space to work things out – but stick around in case I need to ask.’
5. Resist ‘you should have’ comments’ – ‘If I want to know, I’ll ask.’
6. Be impressed – ‘If you expect me to do this again you need to be impressed, so you might have to “fake it ‘til I make it”. And don’t go telling all your friends if I burn something or do something stupid. Don’t make me look like a fool.’
7. Don’t nag – ‘If I take a bit longer than you do or I don’t clean up exactly like you do, cut me some slack – I have just cooked you a meal!’
8. Cut me a deal! – ‘If you expect me to buy into this “cook a meal once a week idea” there has to be something in it for me. This “skills for a lifetime” doesn’t really flick my switch – but money for the movies or that new dress does. You are probably going to buy me new stuff at some stage anyway, you may as well make me think I have earned it.’
Other recommendations include eating together as a family, eating from the four food groups daily, ensuring food safety and yet other guidelines looks at physical activity – because food cannot be considered in isolation if you are wanting a healthy child.
* On Aug 6th The Ministry of Health released Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Children and Young People (aged 2-18 years). Full details, including downloadable brochures, may be found on www.healthed.govt.nz
Sometimes when we are working away so passionately on a project you tend to think that we are on our own – Over the past couple of days we have had articles on the JO website – we really enjoyed being part of a bigger community all working toward similar goals… pop over to his site to see it in context or you can read the article below!
Teen showing the way for kids to become food savvy
If you are a teen the last thing you need is another adult telling you what to do and how to do it… that happens enough at college and at home. There are a lot of kids out there who want to know more about food who want to hear about it from someone like them.
Claire Gourley, 18-year-old New Zealand teen, is sharing her food journey with other kids. Claire is not motivated by a desire to cook or a thirst for nutrition knowledge. No. She just likes great tasting food and wants to look and feel good. She has worked out that she needs to know enough about food to be 100% responsible for her own health.
Claire has developed swag of resources to inspire and motivate other kids. She has a website itsmyturntocooktonight.com, some cookbooks, done lots of media work and has recently added a school holiday cooking program to help her share her ideas with other kids.
When she started this project she could cook about four or five meals. She is a typical teenager because she’s not a ‘foodie’ and she doesn’t want to be a chef. She loves food but like most kids her age she is always busy with friends, school and sport and can’t really be bothered spending too much time or effort on cooking. When it comes to food – she’s interested … but really only in eating it!
However she doesn’t want to settle for average food – she likes great tasting food that is good for her. Her byline is ‘I don’t do complicated’ she has always thought that if she can do it, other kids can too. Simple and quick is good!
Like most kids, Claire doesn’t like her parents hovering around like a helicopter when she is learning something so whatever she does has to include the answers to questions that most kids are thinking – before they have to ask – like ‘How much water to put in the pot?’, ‘Does it matter if it is hot or cold?’, ‘Which vegetables take longer to cook in a stir fry?’, ‘What do they mean by stock?’ So Claire builds these answers into both her recipes and her YouTube’s. She thinks you are best to assume nothing!
When it comes to nutrition Claire has been inspired by the message that you don’t need to know how a light bulb works to get the benefit of it – so similarly she doesn’t have to understand all the science about nutrition and food either to reap the benefits. By keeping to simple things like eating a wide range of foods, knowing most portion sizes are about as big as your fist, that fruit and vegetables are really good for you and that high fat, high sugar foods are treat only, she has been able to adopt excellent nutrition practices without getting hung up on the details. Like most kids she thinks nutrition can be boring and is too negative and bossy. It has been her goal to keep her tips positive and get kids to understand that if you do pig out on some high fat, high sugar food – which they no doubt will – then you need to swing things the other way the next day or pop on your running shoes and move!
Bio: Claire Gourley is an 18-year-old New Zealander who loves to eat and talk. She has worked with her mother, food educator Glenda Gourley, to combine both these passions to create a program to inspire other kids to become food savvy. You can find our more about Claire at itsmyturntocooktonight.com
I feel very proud that they they have noticed what we are doing!! Check it out if you want to see the whole article in context or see below. That is two articles on our projects in a two days… how amazing!
want to read the full article here…
Kids who are food savvy have a huge advantage
Forget the latest computer game or toy – one of the greatest gifts you can give your child is some basic food skills. This is not a debate that you want to have with the child because it certainly won’t get any traction. In the greater scheme of things, being able to make good food choices and having some practical food skills is indeed a phenomenally awesome gift! Once established, it will be with them for their lifetime and will set them on a path of a long, healthy and happy lifestyle.
However whilst many parents know they should give their kids good food skills, the reality is many find the whole task daunting. Glenda Gourley, a food and nutrition educator, has teamed with her teenage daughter Claire, to mix purist nutrition messages with a huge dollop of common sense and reality to come up with a raft of suggestions that parents and kids can relate to.
This mother-daughter team has established a strategy that inspires parents and motivates children to become more food savvy. Claire is the voice to teens and children whilst Glenda is the voice to adults. Claire shares her journey about getting ready to leave home and wanting to know enough about food so that she can look after herself. Glenda adds her perspective from a food and nutrition educator and parent. With two distinct target audiences and lots of resources, they have one goal – food savvy kids who can take good care of themselves.
Being food savvy is not just about cooking, although cooking is central, it also about giving children a range of food skills – from reading labels, food and kitchen safety to making good food choices.
One of the more innovative and exciting parts to their strategy is an online school holiday program where children cook their family dinner, in their home using their food. As part of the fun and highly interactive program there are live-chats and fantastic competitions – ranging from random-acts-of-kindness (children prepare and share food), to movie-making and over-the-top table settings. Whilst imparting food skills was the key goal, the feedback from families has been overwhelming. By encouraging family dinners (with TV switched off!) parents are reporting improvement in self-esteem, confidence, sense of contribution and family bonding. A totally unexpected bonus!
Whilst communicating directly to the children is important, Glenda believes a lot can be done ‘behind the scenes’ and that parents are pivotal. We need to encourage parents to look on cooking the same way as they would a game of backgammon. The children are not going to play backgammon if there is no set in the house. They are more likely to play if the set is stored somewhere where they can see it. They are even more likely to play if you get the set out and arrange the pieces.
Similarly, children are less likely to cook if there are no appealing recipes, the right ingredients aren’t there and there is no encouragement or incentive. Things have to be set up for children so that the option of cooking becomes easy. It’s up to parents to set the scene. Things like leaving a kid’s cookbook on the bench for a few days or casually mentioning that it would be nice if they wanted to give it a go and that you are happy to get any ingredients can make all the difference.
Claire and Glenda have done a lot of research and found some insightful tips how to motivate children. A parent may want their child learn to cook to foster personal responsibility. A teen, however may want to cook to gain leverage… ‘If I cook dinner, can I have money for the movies?” The outcomes maybe the same, however the reasons for engagement are poles apart.
There is no doubt that most parents want to do the best for their children and that kids who are food savvy have a huge advantage. Glenda and Claire aim to empower parents and kids to take the steps to gain skills that will make a difference.
Glenda Gourley: Glenda first emerged with a nutrition degree and like most educators, started with a dogmatic intolerance to high fat, high sugar and high salt foods. Idealist and childless. Now, many years later with three strong-willed children and a career focused on nutrition education, she has morphed her philosophy to a relaxed consistency that is nutritionally robust yet sustainable, realistic and above all excessively tasty! Glenda has established many food education strategies and is an award-winning educator and author. You can follow Glenda on twitter @foodsavvykids or on her site at www.foodsavvykids.com
I’m in Greece. Today I have climbed the Acropylis been absorbed in the amazing history and extraordinary architectural skills of the Greeks, the ravaging by the Turks, the battles with Persians, the plundering by the Scots, the occupation of the Nazis – to mention but a few. The horrific battles these people have endured..
And then I sat in a cafe in what has become the country with the worst childhood overweight, obesity statistics in the world. 50 % of kids here are officially classified in either of the ‘O” groups. The first school group of kids, about 6 years old, to walk past us looked okay, until the stragglers followed through with the teachers - mmm – the bigger kids at the back – mmm about 25% I guessed. Then two other groups came past around 16 and 13 years old respectively, and then it hit me… I saw for myself what the statistics revealed – every second kid was too big.
At the same time as the last of the second group straggled past, it was 36oC and they were really puffing – and carrying the extra weight their puff was more pronounced than the front of the group, our meal was delivered. Our second day and our second meal to totally over deliver. The plates groaning with overload. My mind flew into a calorific calculation, assessment against the plate model, the traffic lights and the outdated pyramid model ( yes, I am in Greece historical models are okay here) but with every model this meal before me totally violated the rules or guidelines. From the menu the food looked great, but the portion size of each meal was excessive.
My first reaction was, “take half of this away and all will be fine”, or to lean to the table next to us and tell them to come share with us. Two weeks of this and I will shunt into the 50% ‘O’ category. My son’s eyes lit up, this was what he would call a ‘pig out’ for the second day in a row.
This nation is at battle, no – it’s not the Turks or the Romans this time, it is the waiter with the charming smile and hospitable gestures. This enemy is so friendly you do not even know he is your enemy. Portion distortion at its worst. Couple this with extreme heat and your desire to sit rather than move and it is no wonder the ‘O’ battle is raging.
As a spectator, it is hard to know who are tourists and who are locals – but no matter who they are, the adults walking past are equally plagued by the ‘O’ epidemic. Protruding bellies and and overweight waddles inflict more than one third of the adults meandering past. It seems the exception rather than the rule to see someone who looks fit and healthy.
The outcome of this battle is not instant death, and you can’t just whip out and win with an overnight surprise invasion, history shows the sword can solve lots of things especially if you are the one wielding it …
This battle is a slow one, inflicting slow pain with a slow arduous path to return to glory. This battle is only going to be won with will power, education, parent support, kids who are food savvy who know how much and how often to eat …
I say slow, but in Greek terms this battle is faster than many they have known. In a land where it can take up to 700 years to build a building, the obesity battle of the past 15 – 20 odd years is nothing. I just hope for their sake they can turn it around…
The rest of the world is watching Greece, not only their dire financial situation, but as our health statistics march quickly behind theirs – any lessons we can learn will be welcome …
Food Savvy Kids, the school holiday cooking program, my book Life Love Food Kids, Claire’s website It’s My Turn To Cook Tonight are all my contributions to make a difference. If you need motivation to take action, this will do it,
As follow up to the Bosch It’s My Turn To Cook School Holiday Program and as a mark of support for Food revolution Day, we held a live chat today and each of us cooked a World Food Revolution Day Dinner for our families – the goal was to cook a meal using fresh food and try at least one new food in the meal. After being on our cooking program most of the kids found that pretty easy!
By real food we go back to Claire’s Foodie Rule which pretty much describes what we think is ‘real’ food is. The rule is if your grandmother wouldn’t recognize it don’t eat too much of it – it will probably be over processed. By over processed we mean it will have lots of additives and added fat and sugar… all of us are better to eat natural or fresh foods like fruit and vegetables and fresh meat – good basic food make with fresh ingredients, just about describes every recipe in our books!
A lot of what Jamie Oliver recommends is what we are doing so it is awesome to be part of something bigger!!!
You are currently browsing the archives for the What’s New… category.
Special Recent Posts
The last School Holiday Program was a crammed with fun and learning as kids got more food savvy!